Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Review: Wicked Jealous

Robin Palmer
Used to being known as That Weird Fat Girl, Simone Walker has no problem with keeping her head down and staying invisible. But when Hillary, her "stepmother-to-be" (despite the fact that Simone's workaholic father is avoiding the whole "marriage" issue) moves in and takes over, Simone has to find a way to get out of the house. Even if it means inadvertently joining a Zumba class full of middle-aged women. Soon, she's looking and feeling healthier -- which is lucky, because when Hillary kicks her out of what was supposed to be a family vacation, Simone ends up living with her older brother and six of his college buddies. Now, with her best friend insisting on a makeover and a popular boy who actually notices her, the advice of seven college guys is helpful, but it also makes things pretty complicated.

Okay, here's the deal: this is an updated, contemporary version of Snow White, with Simone in the starring role of the princess herself. It's a love story (as the subtitle says), but it's also a story of Simone's jealous stepmother-to-be, and more importantly her own journey to becoming a healthier, happier, more sure-of-herself girl. Which is, incidentally, exactly the type of book I enjoy reading. Robin Palmer does a great job of keeping the trademark elements of Snow White while changing and updating the story to make it a realistic, contemporary tale. Though this is something Palmer always seems to do well, I was especially impressed with this novel -- the well-placed bits from the traditional Snow White elevate this sweet tale. Simone's brother and his six roommates (you know, like the seven dwarves) just made this book for me. The camaraderie between them and Simone was great and the scenes between them were some of the funniest, best, and sometimes cutest in the book. All of them were such great characters with awesome, distinct personalities.

Though the storyline between Simone and Hilary, her dad's girlfriend, is a bit far-fetched and hard to believe at times, this is an easy thing to forgive in light of how fun and, yes, pretty realistic, the rest of the story is. For readers who like fairytale retellings or just lighthearted contemporary YA, this is a great one to put on your list. It's quickly become my favorite of Robin Palmer's novels.  Wicked Jealous hits stores July 19th.

1 comment:

  1. Oooh yes! I know we both liked Geek Charming so I'm going to have to give this one a go, too.